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My cat was trying to cough up a furball this morning, and…

Customer Question
My cat was trying...

My cat was trying to cough up a furball this morning, and eventually vomited a little bit, but no hairball. He's calm now, but his stomach seems to be constantly constricting, like he's still trying to get something out

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'm sorry to hear that. Hopefully it didn't make a mess. Did your cat eat anything unusual?

Not that I'm aware of

Veterinarian's Assistant: What is the cat's name and age?

Penguin is 1 year old

Veterinarian's Assistant: What is the cat's name?

Penguin. He's a tuxedo cat, lol

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about your cat?

Not that I'm aware of. He does occasionally get furballs. I'm concerned it could be anxiety. I bought a harness and leash for him to try out yesterday and he did not like it. I tried once more today, and took him outside, and he still didn't like it. Hope I haven't made him anxious

Submitted: 10 months ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Answered in 2 hours by:
9/22/2017
Cat Veterinarian: benedetta7, Veterinarian replied 10 months ago
benedetta7
benedetta7, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 497
Experience: Companion animal medicine and homeopathy.
Verified

Hello, this Dr Benedetta, and I would like to help with Penguin (love the name!).

the first thing I want to say is that in cats it can be difficult to distinguish between gagging from vomiting/expelling hairballs, and coughing from an asthma attack.

If his stomach seems to be constricting, as you say, i'd be worried that he is actaully contracting his abdomen because he is short of breath, as in an asthma attack.

The asthma attack could have been triggered by being outside, regardless of the leash. But often we do not know what triggers the attack.

The second option is that he is retching due to a big fur ball or other foreign material in the stomach.

Has he been able to eat or drink anything since the episode earlier? has he kept it down, or tried to vomit again?

If all is back to normal now, there are 2 things I would recommend: 1) add some Laxair or laxotone to his daily regimen, this will help him pass the hairballs. You can find these products online or at large petsores.

2) if this happens again, take a video and show it to your veterinarian, it may well be that Penguin has asthma and need treatment..

3) if he still not back to normal, he needs to be seen today

as for the leash/harness, back off a bit, try to get him used to it very gradually, i.e. put the harness on, give some treats, take it off after a few minutes, and do this routine lengthning the time he wears it a little everytime until he is comfortable with it, before trying the leash. keep in mind some cats will just not tolerate harnesses.

hope this is helpful! please feel free to continue this conversation, if you have more questions or observations.

Thank you,

Benedetta Sarno, DVM

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Cat Veterinarian: benedetta7, Veterinarian replied 10 months ago
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

benedetta7
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